During a media event for Chris Rock’s latest film Top Five, the actor had some choice words for the two time Super Bowl winning quarterback. In the TMZ video, the famous comedian begins with “I am going to say something really bad about Roethlisberger:” which of course riled up the crowd as many screamed “say it!” The comedian then exclaimed, “he’s the original Cosby… horrible. That’s horrible, it’s going to go everywhere.”

And everywhere it did go, with many people pouncing on the statement: now whether Rock was simply joking around or sticking up for Bill Cosby in a weird way, it has the semblance of a point: minus the fact that the QB’s transgressions began in 2008 and Cosby’s sexual assault accusations began in 2002. But it is interesting to think about how our culture has a weird way of sweeping transgressions under the rug: picking and choosing who gets called out for their alleged horrendous crimes.

The comments stem from the fact that Roethlisberger was accused of sexual assault in 2008 and 2010: in both cases there were no charges filed. However, the former resulted in a civil suit that was dismissed by both parties in 2011. It was never revealed if Roethlisberger paid anything to the plaintiff. But why has Ben’s offenses been swept under the rug, when Cosby’s dirty laundry is being hung out to dry? It is perhaps hard to say that these men are innocent — especially Cosby, who has a mountain of evidence against him — but our system only works if the defendant is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

So maybe calling Roethlisberger the “original Crosby” was the wrong way to go about it, but Rock, directly or indirectly, has made the public think about its finger-wagging.

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